Many North Texas women are no strangers to trying to maintain a good work, life balance. But many may find themselves drowning under the pressures of day to day life and in many cases turn to their friends, family or therapist for help.
But for many women, being brutally honest even with a best girlfriend, partner or parent can be difficult and that is how Laura Franzen and Mel Sellick came up with the idea behind MyFriendJill.com.
"I think we all need to connect in a personal, non-threatening way at different times in our lives," said My Friend Jill Co-Founder Laura Franzen. "But we often aren't able to be completely open and honest with those closest to us. My Friend Jill steps in to fill that void - it's someone who will listen without bias or judgment and help you figure out where you want to go."
In fact according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration, women are more likely to use mental health services than men.
Based in Dallas, MyFriendJill.com employs life coaches, professional coaches, psychologists and social workers. "My Friend Jill is for anyone who needs support and encouragement," said Franzen. "We have coaches that specialize in different areas -- from career change/advancement to managing family changes, from achieving better work/life balance to personal relationships."
The service allows callers to pick online who they would like to speak with and for how long. Franzen is an adviser herself and has a background in social work. She also hand-picked all of the advisers herself.
"All calls are arranged through our simple and confidential online booking tool," said Franzen. "We offer a variety of categories in order to help match you with the best Jill for your needs. We also ask whether you simply want someone to listen for now as you talk it out or whether you would like a deeper level of feedback and insight."
Much like traditional therapy, there is a charge for the counseling which ranges between $60 to $100 depending on the length of the call.
"Despite all of the recent technologies designed to allow people to share and stay connected, we have found that quality time for true, meaningful conversations between friends is diminishing," said Franzen. "Life is full of challenges, both large and small. Jill offers anyone an outlet for honest, person-to-person sharing and thoughtful, practical feedback on an as-needed basis."